It is Easter time again, and with that comes the trend of colored baby chicks.

These chicks, sold on the street by people who know nothing about animals, are dunked in paint in order to be dyed a medley of neon colors. It is a distant memory for most Lebanese people: getting a small cardboard box that has one or two colored chicks in it during Easter, cue children squealing and petting the baby chickens maybe a little too hard, then the chicks die of toxic exposure, dehydration, neglect, or being squeezed to death by a child’s hand, and you get your first lesson about the inevitability of death.

Luckily, Beirut’s governor Ziad Chebib has banned the selling of chicks and particularly colored chicks in Beirut, quelling the barbaric practice for this season.

(Image via The Daily Star)

The NGO, Animals Lebanon, which serves as a rescue group, a shelter, and an animal’s rights advocate has been working with Governor Chebib to ban animal abuse in the area, and considers this a victory for them in addition to the animal protection bill that was approved last February.

However, what about the rest of Lebanon? Why haven’t other governates followed suit and enforced this ban as well? Beirut’s municipality under Ziad Chebib has been taking wonderful strides towards the protection of animals, including a new program that aims to treat and vaccinate stray cats and dogs.

But still, animal abuse runs rampant in other parts of the country where animals are constantly tortured for entertainment; only recently, we were all horrified by a video of two municipality members in Mtein (a village in the Metn area) barbarically torturing and killing a donkey.

It is of the utmost inhumanity to turn animals into children’s toys that are tossed away a few days after Easter; it only reinforces the belief that animals don’t have feelings and are playthings.

This also happens during Christmas, when puppies are gifted to young children who play with them for a couple of days before moving on to another toy. The young puppies are then dumped on the streets and often die young or live long enough to turn into strays that get killed. It is on the parents to explain to their children that animals are living beings, and that having a pet is a huge responsibility and not a seasonal hobby. So please, don’t give in to your child’s annoying screams this year when they demand a colored chick, explain to them how harmful this tradition is and let us put an end to it.

P.S. To every moron who buys these for their child, you know that if they survive you’ll have a few full grown chickens and roosters walking around your precious apartment, right? What, were you planning on subtly making a delicious neon pink chicken dinner in a few weeks?


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